Beth: Alex and I were married twenty five years. We had three children; 2 boys, Sam age 23, Brian, age 20 and a daughter, Kim, age 18. The first ten years of our marriage had been good. Although Alex was not a demonstrative man, I always knew he loved me and our relationship was satisfying to us both. For some inexplicable reason, after we were married about ten years, Alex began to withdraw sexually. I was perplexed as our love making was important to both of us. I always enjoyed it and thought Alex was fulfilled as well. Over the following five years, it was apparent that Alex had lost his sex drive and withdrew from me emotionally, physically and sexually. The cuddling stopped; no more pillow talk, no kissing and finally no more sex. When I confronted him, his response was apathetic. When I suggested we get counseling, he was not interested. Alex was twelve years my senior and I had not been ready to give up sex when I was at my peak. We married when I was twenty-three and at forty-eight I was more sexual than ever. I missed our closeness, the fondling and most of all, I missed our intimacy. I felt rejected, undesirable and resentful. I reached a block in the road of my marriage. Confused and bitter, I began to seek my needs outside my relationship. At first I wasn’t aware of my flirtatious affect when I would go out with my girlfriends. But soon it was apparent to them and finally, I owned it. Because I felt so hungry for love and affection, I wasn’t selective with my choices and seemed to be happy just to get the attention of any man; and there were quite a few.
My absence from the home grew more with a yearning that seemed to be out of control. I had a voracious appetite to be desired and affirmed and was willing to take it from anyone who was willing to give it. I was still very attractive, and took good care of myself, so I knew the problem in the marriage wasn’t about me. Even Alex assured me that it wasn’t me. “It’s my fault”, he would say when I would confront the issue, however he never offered a solution or showed a willingness to work on it. I am sure I made a contribution to the demise, but without his cooperation, the marriage was over.